The Microsoft v Motorola court case that’s been bubbling away since 2010 seems to be heating up in all the wrong ways for the Xbox 360 manufacturer, with a judge involved recommending that the console’s US imports and sales be halted immediately.
International Trade Commission judge David Shaw, pictured, has said he believes that the importing of 4GB and 250GB Xbox 360 consoles into the United States (they’re manufactured in China) should be immediately suspended, and that Microsoft should pay Motorola 7% of the value of any unsold consoles remaining in the United States.
Those consoles already in the US and not sold would then also be barred from sale with a cease-and-desist order.
While Microsoft obviously protested, believing the suspension of Xbox 360 sales would hurt competition in the marketplace, Shaw says “enforcing intellectual property rights outweighs any potential economic impact on video game console buyers.”
The dispute dates back a few years, and centres around allegations that Microsoft’s Xbox 360 infringes upon five patents held by Motorola, mostly related to video codecs.
If the ITC’s commissioners agree with Shaw, their recommendation will end up on President Obama’s desk, where he and his advisors will have 60 days to review it.
Note that the ban only mentions Microsoft’s current 4GB and 250GB systems; the fate of 320GB consoles or older, pre-owned and refurbished Xbox 360s is unclear.
It follows similar action earlier in the month in Germany, which also relates to the Motorola dispute.